Week 6 of Twist Challenge

After a quick co-wash this morning ; I used a mix of emu oil, Shea butter and coconut oil to twist my hair. The front is corn rowed twists, the rest are single twists.

I noticed my hair is easier to detangle, and has less shrinkage. I want to massage the scalp with rosemary oils and peppermint oils which are ideal for scalp stimulation and hair growth . The emu oil is super moisturizing for the cooler, autumn days and light enough to use every day .

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Detangling

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Please don’t judge me as a bad mother because I haven’t detangled my 3 year old son’s hair in…forever. Actually ,  yes, it’s been probably a year. My son has gorgeous ringlets but lately the curls have been really matted and frizzy. And  my son’s not a poodle. So.

I am now a detangling believer because 10 minutes with a Denman and half a bottle of conditioner can change your life. My son has hair, a lot of hair ,  and it was suffocating in the bird’s nest in his head. I managed to painlessly detangle his hair in the bath before lovingly applying Shea, coconut and emu oil and his curls are all freed from bondage.

To be honest ,  I need to try detangling my own hair. I normally finger detangle, then wonder why I have frizz instead of heavenly coils! Detangling is life.

Castor Bagging

20171007_121003.jpgI tried out the method of soaking my dampened ends in castor oil to strengthen the oldest part of my hair and reduce troublesome split ends. I decided to leave it in for 20 minutes and let it soak in for the rest of the day  (without washing it out). You could do it at night but I didn’t want to ruin my pillow cases.

It is the start of week 4 of my twist challenge and there’s only 5 more months to go! I’ve grown so accustomed to having my hair twisted all the time ,  it’s actually a bother to have it untwisted .  I have noticed keeping it twisted lends to a looser curl pattern and definitely retains length noticeably! My goal is just to have shoulder length hair so I can enjoy a few more inches of growth and have more hair for my buns and ponytails :).

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Natural Cure

My son’s eczema has cured up considerably and naturally with a few oils and butters that are beneficial for hair and skin :  Shea butter ,  coconut oil ,  flax oil (ingested), emu oil and tea tree oil as well as a smidge of raw honey.

Not only is this golden mix of the perfect consistency to melt into one’s skin but it’s the perfect butter for hair too. I guess oils infused with Shea is nothing new but then again, Mother Nature is nothing new but she’s still oh, so good!20171004_123606.jpg

Castor Oil

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Some people hate it! Some people love it! And others–like me–put this thick, strong-smelling oil back in our winter arsenal to help combat the cold weather’s drying effects on our kinks and coils. Since I’m doing a Twist Challenge for 6 month (the hair growth already is ridiculous…I’m heading from chin-length to shoulder-length territory!!!), I thought I’d try some new things with castor oil this cold season because I want to maximize the hair growth during those 6 months.

While doing an overnight castor oil + coconut oil hair masque, (simply apply the oils to damp hair overnight and rinse in the morning), I wanted to try soaking the ends of my hair in castor oil and securing in little baggies and elastic bands to really repair split ends. My hair at my crown is so thick and voluminous, but by the time you reach the ends it’s like..string cheese. Dry, puffy string cheese. My ends are chronically dry and it makes a hairdo look…hairdon’t.

Another way to sneak the benefits of castor oil into your daily regimen is to put a few tablespoons into your daily mist to moisturize the hair. I already add a bit of aloe, conditioner, water and coconut oil but the castor oil will help with more moisture. Because really, can you ever have enough for our thirsty roots?

On Wash Day, consider a rigorous scalp massage with castor and peppermint oil, bonus if you have/make rosemary oil. Castor is apparently amazing for the scalp so this is something that can be done before shampooing your hair or co-washing it.

These are just some other ideas other than using it for LOC to just to put some on your ends. Which you can still do, of course! Because love it or hate it, castor oil is a natural girl’s best friend!

Twist Challenge: Week 2

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You guys! Everybody needs to get in on this fall/winter twist challenge. I’m telling you, it will breathe life into your natural coils and curls. I especially recommend it for my sisters with the kinkiest hair, or hair that tends to just stay dry,  no matter what oil, cream or prayer you put on it. I honestly HATED my hair in twists at first. I love my bouncy twist-outs and big hair, no lie. But it is worth the abundance of health, wealth and slayage that twists bring by giving your hair a vacay. Sidenote: you can do a lot of dope styles with twists, they don’t just have to be this horrendous protective  style. Sidesidenote: I haven’t quite mastered those amazeballs styles as yet. Maybe week 3 will be the week?!

Here’s a few tips to make a twist (or braid) challenge doable. First of all, if you start getting tired of twists…switch up to braids. If you are used to braids, do some twists. Secondly, you can change up the sizes–go mini for a few weeks or do some big, bold and beautiful chunky twists pinned up or side swept with some pretty earrings and a generous dollop of shine-increasing grapeseed oil. Just don’t forget to moisturize, spritz with water and massage that scalp (if you work out…and you SHOULD be working out, you can use tea tree oil or ACV to gently clean the scalp until wash day).

If you are truly serious about natural hair growth, a twist challenge will do the trick. The main reason I recommend it over adding synthetic extensions is because it really expands your self-love and helps you better understand your hair and appreciate the journey–every (sometimes) painful step of it. If you have synthetic hair covering your real, growing hair–you miss really working side by side with your hair. There are the subtle things you miss, there is a lot of intimacy with your hair you  miss out on. Trust me when you love your hair at its worst (or what you perceive to be its worst), when it’s ready to undo the twists and rock that SERIOUSSS twist out, you will literally SHINE with pride. And trust me, it’s so worth it. 6 months ladies! Let’s do it!

Eczema

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Sad news. My 3 year old’s eczema was recently exacerbated by the use of a naturally exfoliating sea sponge. I didn’t realize how detrimental the natural sponge was in his sensitive skin until too late…now it’s been a painful battle to get rid of the angry rashes all over his upper body. I’m not about to use no steroid creams on his delicate skin. This is my plan:

1. I replaced his hypoallergenic Tide Free & Clear laundry detergent with the brand Nature Clean. I also stopped using fabric softener sheets.

2. I switched from buying synthetic clothing to organic cotton and blends. I like Mini Mioche and WeeWoolies.

3. I switched from a hypoallergenic  baby wash to bathing him in oatmeal powder and rinsing with water infused in chamomile .  (The bathtub is also getting scrubbed with lemons, ACV and baking soda. I was formerly using Method eco spray  and Lysol wipes).

4. My son loves toast so I’m looking for an affordable gluten free bread. We will cut out gluten. I’m also adding a tablespoon of flax oil to his smoothies. It could take weeks to have effect on eczema though.

5. For itching relief, I bought :  tea tree oil ,  emu oil ,  organic coconut oil and Shea butter . Apparently grapeseed is really good for eczema but I cannot find a pure, cold-pressed grapeseed oil .  Applying chamomile tea bags on his back while he sleeps has helped as well .

6. And lastly ,  I threw out the rugs because of the risk of dust aggravating the eczema .  My son loves to roll on the rugs!

The best part about these natural eczema fighters is their versatility .  So many oils can be used for hair and skin (like flax and emu and grapeseed ) .

If you can’t eat it, it shouldn’t be on your child’s skin. If you are a veteran eczema fighter, please leave a tip or two in the comments below! How do you deal with ever ?

 

 

 

 

Twist believer

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What if twists and braids was the way our hair was originally meant to be in? Obviously we are not born with our hair in neatly parted two strand twists, but it’s without question across the natural haircare world that African hair thrives in twists and braids .  It may just be the default for our hair.

I have kept my hair in “default ” twists for about 8 days now and I’m slowly loving it .  My 4B hair doesn’t dry out as quickly ,  holds more sheen and softness and doesn’t get unpredictable in wind, humidity and rain.

Twist’ s beauty is also underrated. The spiral shape of twists is like art. You can style twists in as many styles as our natural hair left out. We love twists for their twist-out definition and volume.  Can we love twists just for twists?

 

Wait and See

It’s Wash Day! I had my twists in for 7 days and unraveled them today to see my hair felt very thick and soft. My hair was clearly thriving under ‘twisted’ conditions .

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I pre-pooed my hair with melted cocoa butter then shampooed with a gentle co-cleanser before utilizing apple cider vinegar and condish. I ended with a quick 3 minute steam and a LOC method of grapeseed oil ,  Shea butter and a cheap hair cream. Now my hair is retwisted until next Wash Day. The only thing I’d do differently now is make my twists bigger and moisturize the crown of my head more.

But in  just one week of keeping my hair twisted 24/7, there has been a noticeable improvement in the texture and thickness .  It feels good!

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Twist Challenge Day 4

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If you didn’t read my previous post ,  I am keeping my hair in twists for 6 months mainly to grow it. After 4 days, I redid my front row of twists because they looked fuzzy. You know how it go.

I don’t love having my hair in twists .  I guess I’m not used to a non-Europeanized version of myself .  It’s taking time to feel comfortable and confident in twists. It does not give the illusion that I have a lot of hair. And hair is a woman’s crowning glory .

But darn ,  after only 4 days I can attest to less breakage and split ends. I have less hair all over my bathroom floor! The hair itself is silkier .  The key is to habitually spray it moisture whenever I go to brush my teeth ,  and rub coconut or grapeseed oil to the ends.

These are thirsty roots. Even in twists, the hair dries out faster than spittle in the desert. It’s imperative to get in a habit of untwisting ,  moisturizing  (I use a mix of jojoba, rosemary ,  Shea butter and cocoa butter )  and immediately retwisting .

I can probably stick  with it thanks to headwraps and cute hats. I said my hair would be in twists. I didn’t say anyone would see it! 😉

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